Kochi, Jan 14: The Kerala High Court on Friday said prima facie, it was of the opinion that malls don't have the right to collect parking fees and asked Kalamassery municipality whether it had issued any license to the Lulu International shopping mall at Ernakulam for the same.
Justice P V Kunhikrishnan, while hearing a plea that the mall was illegally collecting parking fees from customers, however, did not ask the mall to stop the collection but said it would be at their risk.
"As per the Building Rules, sufficient area for parking space is necessary for constructing a building. Parking space is part of the building. The building permit is issued on condition that there will be parking space. Based on this undertaking the building is constructed. After constructing the building, whether the owner of the building can collect parking fee is the question. Prima facie I am of the opinion that it is not possible," the court said in its order.
The court has asked the municipality to file a statement about its stand regarding the issue and posted the matter for further hearing on January 28.
"Further collection of the parking fee by respondent (Lulu Mall) for parking vehicles in the area which is earmarked in the building permit for parking will be subject to the result of the final decision of this writ petition. But I make it clear that they can collect the parking fee at their risk," the court said.
Petitioner Pauly Vadakkan, a film director, has contended that the mall's management was responsible for providing free parking to customers.
Vadakkan moved the high court after Rs 20 as parking fees was collected from him when he had visited the mall on December 2.
He has alleged that the mall staff closed the exit gates and threatened him when he initially refused to pay the amount.
"The parking area in a commercial complex is a public place meant for the purpose of the customers visiting that commercial complex and the 1st respondent (Lulu) in no way can collect parking fees for the same," it was contended.
However, this contention was opposed by Lulu's lawyer, who said that the mall has a license.
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New Delhi(PTI): Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday said the BJP's politics of "hatred" is very harmful for the country and is also responsible for unemployment.
The former Congress chief said this a day after he attacked the BJP government by putting out an online quiz.
"I also believe that the hate politics of the BJP is very harmful for the country. And this hatred is also responsible for the unemployment," he said in a tweet in Hindi.
"Domestic and foreign industries cannot run without peace in the society. Will defeat this growing hatred around you everyday with brotherhood. Are you with me? #NoHate," Gandhi added.
The Congress leader had put out an online quiz on Saturday, asking people about the "biggest shortcoming" of the BJP government. The options he gave were "unemployment", "tax extortion", "price rise" and an "atmosphere of hatred".